Last Saturday we went to Melaka to visit a local artist, Mr. Tham Swee Inn. It was an eye opening experience as we’ve never met a real life artist before, not to mention entering the abode of one. I guess our lecturer wanted us to go visit a ‘cultured’ artist and an art gallery to make us more ‘cultured’ (tea and scones, love?). You could say that we were absolutely astonished when we saw our artist.
Yup, that’s him alright. You could’ve mistaken him for that poor beggar across the street or that mentally unsound man taking a dunk behind a bush. Talk about looking ‘cultured’.
But he was aight. He showed us around, explaining to us his works and brought us around his house. Apparently he makes lots of money by selling his works to Bank Negara, MAS and Genting Highlands to name a few; and even creates sculptures for skyscrapers in KL. However, he obviously doesn’t look a million dollar nor does his humble home. Note the word ‘humble’.
Being an artist, he thinks differently than us Philistines. He keeps weird stuffs and trinkets all over his house. There is wood from a jetty made into a bench, a buoy hung at its exotic garden, a bathtub made into a pond and marbles scattered and cemented on the garage floor. But nothing could top this:
Yeah, and it serves a function too.
Since there’s no roofing in the kitchen (and other parts of the house), they use that in case it rains.
These are some of his works:
And these are some of his son’s work who also happens to be an aspiring artist:
His son is in his early twenties, hence the wicked testosterone driven art.
I mentioned just now that this fabulously rich artist is living the simple, rustic life, right? Not with his ride he ain’t:
After much carousing in the surreal cultural town of Melaka, I had to buy something as a souvenir of course. And this is what I just had to have:
A cheap ass wooden samurai sword! Now I feel so much safer in my hostel at night with much of those rape rumours going around.
When I think back of Mr. Tham’s artwork, it’s not that difficult to emulate his works. Heck, I can produce my own artwork too; and in fact, I already did before seeing his works. I am too, proved to be ‘cultured’:
I joke, I joke.
If you have the time, go visit this guy. If you wanna read more detailed accounts of this incredible artist, visit my literature blog. 'Coz it's really worth your time. If you're 'cultured', that is.